Aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth is being fitted with her third Phalanx Close-In Weapons System.

The Phalanx Close-In Weapons System is designed for use as an anti-aircraft and anti-missile defence.

The vessel also carries 30mm Automated Small Calibre Guns and Miniguns for use against fast attack craft.

The system is radar-controlled and is said to provide a ‘last chance’ defence for ships against anti-ship missiles and aircraft.

The following excellent graphic from SaveTheRoyalNavy.org, I recommend you follow @NavyLookout on Twitter if you don’t already, shows the coverage arc for the three systems fitted to the carrier.

Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers - News and Discussion - Page 321 -  UK Defence Forum
Image via savetheroyalnavy.org

Phalanx automatically detects, tracks and engages threats. It features a 20mm M-61A1cannon, search and track radar and FLIR in the Block 1B model.

To date, the United States Navy and 20 other nations have purchased more than 850 Phalanx systems.

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David
David
6 months ago

Have the 30mm cannons been fitted now too? I wasn’t aware they had been.

Still, not to bemoan what has been said so many times on this site but our QEC carriers have a woefully inadequate self defence suite….

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
6 months ago
Reply to  David

More to self defence then just guns and missiles. EW and defensive aids systems have a huge affect. And with the escorts that will be part of the task group, these carrier’s will be the best protected warships this country has put to sea.

Frank62
Frank62
6 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

But the Americans(Russians,Chinese also) don’t skimp & rely on ECM, decoys etc alone. They have a 3 tier AA/Anti missile weapons system while we’re going to stick stupidly with just the last ditch one of doubtful effectiveness. They have far more escorts to call upon too. Shows what blinkered thinking we suffer under. We’ll probably chance it until something horrible happens then wring our hands, have an enquiry to establish the blatently obvious, introduce better systems/layers for a generation, then forget it all, again.

Frank62
Frank62
6 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Good we’ve finally fitted the 3rd, anyway. Pity we waste valuable wepons stations on 30mm chain guns that have no AA capability.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
6 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

That’s not how a layered air defence system works. Just because other vessels have them, doesn’t mean they will need them. We have invested a huge amount on our T45’s and T23′ and we have some of the finest air defence missiles in the world. Russia doesn’t even have a carrier, so I wouldn’t worry about them. We certainly do not ‘chance it’ as you say, If any carrier has to use any of it’s self defence weapons, then all is probably lost, and you are looking at a full on WW3 scenario. And if that was the case, we… Read more »

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
6 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

I suspect that you know this but launching a missile from an aircraft carrier is actually quite problematic. For starters anyone and anything down wind of the launch needs to be moved out of the way so they don’t get burned or blasted with FOD. Yes, and I know someone will say the SeaCeptor is soft launched with compresses air but compressed air can still blast things around. FOD can be in the forms of bit of unburned propellant bits of missile that detach items caught by the rocket motor blast and thrown backwards down the trajectory misfire causing whole… Read more »

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
6 months ago

Very well put mate. The investment has been made with our escorts (Sea Ceptor Sea Venom) so the carrier can concentrate on delivering it’s primary weapon systems. Aircraft. We took Sea Dart off the Invincible class so it could carry more Aircraft. And the intire front half of the flight deck would have to be clear of aircraft and personnel if that weapon system would ever have been used in anger for the above reasons you outlined. ?

Ron5
Ron5
6 months ago

AFAIK Sea Ceptor does not use compressed air to launch.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
6 months ago
Reply to  Ron5

According to the manufacturers it is soft launched. There is a divergence in press releases/brochures as to how this is done. Some cite compressed air others are vague which might indicate pyrotechnic (or other) vaporisation of water or in the alternative airbag capsule type gas ejection. It could well be that different methods are used in different situations with Sea ejection not the same as Land Ceptor. Defence update.com (not the best primary source) States “ The engine is ignited high above the vessel, after being injected to the air by compressed air” Anyway the main fact according to the… Read more »

David
David
6 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Pretty much what happened after the Falklands… Lessons forgotten all too soon.

4th watch
4th watch
6 months ago
Reply to  David

Good thing we’ve got a ship named Prince of Wales, might eventually jog a few memories if/ when it gets to Singapore. Maybe the MOD planners will have a few sleepless nights, but I doubt it.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
6 months ago
Reply to  David

I can assure you that they were not forgotten. The combination of radar systems and AAW missiles that we now have is second to none. State of the art and modern. Totally unlike the rag bag of old systems and semi mature systems used in ’82. You do have a point in terms of anti ship and land attack missiles both in terms of quantity and quality. However, there is a solution in sight for AShM and that solution might also cover off land attack. Quantity remains to be seen particularly as all RN ships are limited by lack of… Read more »

Peter Crisp
Peter Crisp
6 months ago

I realise this is primarily an anti-air system but can they be used against enemy ships?
A burst from this is going to be a bad day for any ship short of a WW2 era battleship and as they’re accurate enough to hit a missile they should be able to pinpoint the bridge of a ship which would be rather unsettling.

Is that even feasible?

Jonny
Jonny
6 months ago
Reply to  Peter Crisp

I don’t know about the damage they can do but their range is very short compared to anti ship missiles and cannons which would already have decided the fate of the ships by the time they got within this range.

BB85
BB85
6 months ago
Reply to  Jonny

The carriers can engage threats miles out when they are in the middle of the ocean and in war time. In peace time when transiting the Suez canal, red sea, straits of Gibraltar the rules of engagement will be a lot shorter.

Watcherzero
Watcherzero
6 months ago
Reply to  Peter Crisp

They can be used against rigid inflatables and torpedoes at a push. Considering the height of aircraft carriers however it would depend on the mount, whether it can depress that far.

Challenger
Challenger
6 months ago
Reply to  Peter Crisp

As others have said whether they could be used against surface targets would largely depend on the height and elevation of the mounts.

The 30mm cannons would be the last ditch anti-surface system if all the other layers of defence provided by the rest of the carrier-group failed.

4th watch
4th watch
6 months ago
Reply to  Challenger

I’d forget about 20mm or even 30mm and go for 3x57mm and give yourself a longer reach.
BTW has anyone seen that newsreel of TF57 carriers blasting away with their 4.5″ and multiple pom-poms in the Pacific. Great stuff but it seems like ‘the bomber may often get through’ and an armoured deck helps.

Challenger
Challenger
6 months ago
Reply to  4th watch

Well personally seen as we’re introducing a 40mm system into service which is in many ways a better CIWS i’d look to progressively replace all Phalanx and DS30’s with more of them, Martlet canisters for extra punch and on center-line mounts like T31 if possible to provide complimentary arc’s of fire.

Adrian
Adrian
6 months ago
Reply to  Peter Crisp

Can Phalanx even be manually operated? I doubt this was envisioned as a likely use-case, so it may not even be able to automatically identify a large ship as a valid target – hence manual operation.
Not to mention the idea of a hostile ship being within the 2km effective range of a CIWS system, it’s an interesting thought.

Watcherzero
Watcherzero
6 months ago
Reply to  Adrian

It was introduced with block 0 in 1980 but from block 1B (1999) it can have manual controls in the warfare centre and tracks surface targets with its radar.

Last edited 6 months ago by Watcherzero
Gunbuster
Gunbuster
6 months ago
Reply to  Peter Crisp

Dit on… Back in the day one of the first T42s to put Phalanx to sea was the Brum. It was also fitted with a DAS sight , a aimer sat in it and used it to direct fire from the MK8 gun. When we had a Gen 1 THIM fitted to the sight ( This was late 80s) we (The Tiffs!) conducted a feasibility study of tying the phalanx to the DAS sight. With a simple syncro chain it was very feasible but was ultimately rejected as a capability requirement. This was the era of the Iranian Boghammer fast… Read more »

Jonny
Jonny
6 months ago

Well from that graphic it shows why at least four is needed…

Trevor G
Trevor G
6 months ago
Reply to  Jonny

Indeed.
Spoil the ship for a ha’porth of tar springs to mind.

Jonny
Jonny
6 months ago
Reply to  Trevor G

Phalanx is so cheap comparatively, it just doesn’t makes sense. Hopefully it’s an investment that can be made with the latest increase in defence spending.

Julian
Julian
6 months ago
Reply to  Jonny

Plus as Frank62 said in another comment here – “Good we’ve finally fitted the 3rd, anyway. Pity we waste valuable weapons stations on 30mm chain guns that have no AA capability.”. With Frank’s comment in mind I wonder, if they really were penny pinching it to the extent of not being willing to fund a 4th Phalanx for each carrier, why 4 x DS30 (as I understand it) + 3 x Phalanx was considered more appropriate than 3 x DS30 + 4 x Phalanx. Yes 4 x Phalanx + 3 x DS30 would still have been extra cost since I… Read more »

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
6 months ago
Reply to  Julian

Who says the DS30’s can’t be upgraded with a larger more powerful automated cannon if needs be?

The automated cannon AA ASM market is maturing at the moment and I can see these getting swapped out in due course.

Battlefield is also moving to more accurate medium Cali red for these kind of jobs.

Maybe RN is waiting for this to mature a bit? This would be modernisation and upgrading in one go.

Ron5
Ron5
6 months ago

The DS30 manufacturer says the DS30M can be easily upgraded to 40mm.

Probably not worth the bigger gun but proximity fused 30mm ammo, that’s currently being developed by NG, would be.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
6 months ago
Reply to  Ron5

Quite

ETH
ETH
6 months ago
Reply to  Ron5

Upgrading all DS30’s to 40mm would make a lot more sense logistically if the 40mm will be introduced on the Type 31s anyways. The Type 31s choice of gun calibres still confuses me with absolutely 0 commonality with the rest of the fleet.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
6 months ago
Reply to  ETH

Well the 40mm gives a lot more range and punch and more potential for smartness in future.

Either way the mounts have ongoing utility.

TopBoy
TopBoy
6 months ago
Reply to  Jonny

I agree 100% Jonny

RobW
RobW
6 months ago
Reply to  Jonny

A ship doesn’t stand still, it manoeuvres during battle to present whichever angle to the threat is best.

They will be well protected by T45, T26, T23, F35s and a sub.

Frank62
Frank62
6 months ago
Reply to  RobW

No as fast as programed attacking anti ship missiles.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
6 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

It just doesn’t work like that Frank62. Everyone massively underestimates the difficulties in tracking, targeting, and accurately engage modern warships at range when maneuvering and tracking at speed. Even to find a carrier and accurately track one is very very difficult. Let alone get through a very capable layered air defence system stretching out over 500 miles, ECM alone can ruin the bad guy’s day. Anti ship warfare is incredible difficult to pull off, hence why anti ship missiles have been used so little over the last 40 years.

Jonathan
Jonathan
6 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Yes and there is also the fact heavyweight anti ship missiles are well know for hitting lots of random things other than what they were aimed at ( fisherman’s/Shepard’s huts, fishing boats, merchant ships ). Hurling 1000s lbs of missile and warhead hundreds of miles in the hope it does not accidentally kill 4000 tourists instead of what you think your shooting it is not something a navy of a western liberal democracy is ever likely to do as its a great way to loose a war and have a change of government.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
6 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Exactly, rules of engagement make these weapons far less affective then many think. And nations just don’t start attacking aircraft carriers out of the blue. Some people on this site seem to think that because we are sending the QE to the far east next year she is going to come under instant attack ?. She will be very well protected next year, and the 24 5th Gen fighters flying from her deck will also play a very big part in that defence.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
6 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Hmme

That might have been true of early generations. It certainly is true of the older Harpoons and Exocet type weapons.

Newer ones can and do have that ability to be directed/programmed in flight and the target area geofenced. As well as geofencing waymarks to avoid.

So I’m not convinced that argument rolls anymore.

Grubbie
Grubbie
6 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Once you start targeting carriers you are not going to be worried about tourism.
People seem to have forgotten what war is like.

Rob N
Rob N
6 months ago
Reply to  Jonny

I am not sure the Port side arc is accurate. If you look at pictures of the mount from various angles it appears to cover most of the Port side. It appears to have an unobstructed view aft. I think the mount positions could be better placed. The front two mount platforms could have been extended out from the hull better covering the bow and both sides of the ship, with one at the stern. Or even better add a extra Phalanx at the port stern area.

Paul42
Paul42
6 months ago
Reply to  Rob N

The QEs actually have mountings to take 4 x Phalanx, but are only fitted with 3 in a similar layout to US Carriers. QE could and should, have two mountings port and starboard at the stern but only has the port mounting. No excuse for not fitting the 4th unit.

David
David
6 months ago
Reply to  Paul42

Spot on. Ridiculous penny pinching…..

Rob N
Rob N
6 months ago
Reply to  David

It just appears very short sighted to not protect the carrier properly. They should fit the extra Phalanx. Also Sea Ceptor. These carriers may have to fight at some point… a small investment now may save lives and increase the credibility of the UK carrier groups.

Peter Galloway
Peter Galloway
6 months ago
Reply to  Jonny

Guess the pic needs the engagement range to make sense. I always wondered how 3 could provide full cover, now it makes sense. At the target range there are no blind spots. (Recall white is the blind spots, at engagement range, there is no white)

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
6 months ago

Ds30mm with martletts. Needed. Urgently.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
6 months ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

it’s getting 4 x DS30’s

dan
dan
6 months ago

Would have liked to have seen a RAM launcher instead but better than nothing.

Frank62
Frank62
6 months ago
Reply to  dan

Something like that to engage aircraft & missiles far further out than Phalanx can. Sea Ceptor would be a good solution if cheasper than RAM..

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
6 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Thats what the T45 and T23 are for. They carry lots of Sea Captors and Sea Viper’s and the F35’s with AMRAAM/ASRAAM

Rob N
Rob N
6 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

True to an extent but when QE was planned the expected number of T45s was 12. We ended up with 6. Same with frigates we have gone from 13 T23 to 8 frontline capable frigates. So the level of protection from other units is less then originally planned. Also there is the unexpected – what happens if a sub takes out a T45 in the carrier group? The point is that extra defence on the carrier is insurance – you may not need it but it is there. Also adding an extra Phalanx and some Sea Ceptor is a inexpensive… Read more »

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
6 months ago
Reply to  Rob N

Except we will not send our carrier’s into serious halms way without the correct protection. Lots of toys can be fitted if we are sending warships off to war. Countries just don’t attack aircraft carrier’s out if the blue. A serious political fall out would have to happen before we got anywhere near shooting at Sombody’s warships.

Rob N
Rob N
6 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

True but not to have your carrier at full spec means that if it is needed at short notice we would have a real problem responding. Also the credibility of our carrier is in direct proportion to its perceived capabilities. Currently the perception of the QE is tgat it is under armed and cannot defend itself. I cannot say the perception is wrong…!

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
6 months ago
Reply to  Rob N

That perception is only shared by people who use defence sites such as this one. The correct perception, is that it’s a 5th gen aircraft carrier, fully integrated for a 5th gen strike wing of F35’s.That is hugely adaptable, room for future growth and expanding it’s capabilities. The US are pretty envious of what we have achieved, and the US Marine Corp have no concerns about self defence, or what our task group will be able to protect. No other nation except the USA will have such an adaptable or capable asset able to deploy 5th gen first night of… Read more »

Geoff
Geoff
6 months ago

So QNLZ has been fitted with a system totally incapable of doing what is written on the tin, AND it has a honking great blind spot in the public domain.
Oh, and wasnt it supposed to be 3 from the start ? What did they do, quickly rip it off POW seeing as she is disabled for the mid-term future ?
We have a cheap-skate Mickey Mouse Navy

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
6 months ago
Reply to  Geoff

I dread to think what words you’d use to describe other navies if the RN is cheapskate and Mickey Mouse with the assets, kit and people it has….

Why is the system incapable?

Airborne
Airborne
6 months ago
Reply to  Geoff

Cheap skate and Mickey mouse? Damn you have just proven your lack of subject matter knowledge. I’m ex Army and even I understand the navy has serious issues, but is the most capable and advanced in Europe. All your comment has done is disrespect those people who serve in the RN.

Always Right
Always Right
1 month ago
Reply to  Airborne

The world rather than just Europe.

Grubbie
Grubbie
6 months ago

History shows time and again the weakness and crazy overconfidence in AA, and its even worse for ships. QE2 is only receiving this mount because POW has been put out of action for at least 6 months by a small leak.
In all honesty,would these carriers really worry a serious opponent? If its not a serious opponent, then we don’t need them.
Force Z for generation Z.

John Stott
John Stott
6 months ago
Reply to  Grubbie

Music to my ears that. A floating, fat target. More of a status symbol than a serious military asset. Imagine if that money had been invested in cyber/drone and future methods of defensive warfare. To “defend” a ship of this size with such weaponry really displays what the concept is. Ridiculous.

David Flandry
David Flandry
6 months ago
Reply to  John Stott

Let me instruct you in aircraft carrier warfare. The ship’s main weaponry is its air wing. If you are on the receiving end of a strike by said air wing, you will not consider it a status symbol. For references try Pearl Harbor, Taranto.

John Stott
John Stott
6 months ago
Reply to  David Flandry

I suggest, respectfully, you research F35B “capability”. It is sadly lacking in so many areas as to be useless as an air defence fighter.

Jonathan
Jonathan
6 months ago
Reply to  John Stott

That’s really not the reality. It is the most advanced operational aircraft out there, it will see and kill any opposition way before said opposition is in any position to fight back. I know there is a lot said about the 35Bs ability to turn and dog fight some 4 generation fighters. But thats making a very big assumption that the 4th generation fighter will even survive to close and locate a flight of networked 35Bs, who will be able to hold it at an advantageous range and kill it with BVR attack. Air Vice Marshal, James Edgar Johnson was… Read more »

TrevorH
TrevorH
6 months ago
Reply to  John Stott

When was the last time an American carrier was fired on? When was a RN carrier since WW2 attacked?

Dave G
Dave G
6 months ago
Reply to  TrevorH

For RN, Probably 1982 (intended / desired target if not actual at least)…. atlantic conveyor and escorts had a hard time but the carriers survived.

Frank62
Frank62
6 months ago
Reply to  Dave G

Quite so. Carriers are the number one priority target for any opponent.

Always Right
Always Right
1 month ago
Reply to  Dave G

So WW2 then. Not 1982.

John Stott
John Stott
6 months ago
Reply to  TrevorH

The Argentines did their best, and Atlantic Conveyor paid the price that Hermes or Invincible could easily have paid. Had Woodward positioned the carriers to provide effective air cover for the landings and subsequent operations no doubt one of them would have sustained damage from iron bombs as did so many other surface assets. So l hope that provides some insight.

Airborne
Airborne
6 months ago
Reply to  John Stott

Could, should, maybe! That’s war, it’s all about formulating your plan with the assets and people you have, and changing it almost immediately once the enemy decides they want to do something different. Your patronising last sentence demeans you mate.

Steve R
Steve R
6 months ago
Reply to  John Stott

Your comments show how little you know. Just because a carrier isn’t invulnerable, you count it as obsolete or a waste. Why is it then that the US, China, india and France are all building or designing carriers of their own if they’re useless? They’re not a status symbol as you say; a carrier is a big part of what makes a blue water navy. You cannot project power far from home without a carrier, you cannot anymore control an area of ocean without a carrier and her aircraft. In other pages you went on about subs should replace all… Read more »

Meirion X
Meirion X
6 months ago
Reply to  Steve R

You are 100% correct Steve!

But J Stott does Not learn from logical reasoning whatsoever, just like Harold!

Last edited 6 months ago by Meirion X
Airborne
Airborne
6 months ago
Reply to  Meirion X

DON’T MENTION HAROLD. You know he will appear once the nurse plugs him in and gives his lithium battery another 24hrs charge.

Meirion X
Meirion X
6 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

It is unbelievable he has been absent for a while!

I am sure he is hiding behind some false pretence in another disguise!

Airborne
Airborne
6 months ago
Reply to  Meirion X

More than likely mate, although there was a sad uninformed post last week by a poster with an avatar called “Alba Airborne” possibly a dig?

julian1
julian1
6 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

i actually think harold and pkcasmir are the same person, different personas. One is Trotskyite, the other is a Proud Boy

John Stott
John Stott
6 months ago
Reply to  Steve R

Hey, I offer my opinion as is my right on any open forum. Just because you may disagree with said opinions is your right too. This “forum” is full of opinions. Learning to accept difference without, like some, resorting to name-calling, shows a maturity. I state my views because l do not believe aircraft carriers have a place in modern warfare. They are vulnerable and high-value targets end of. My preference for underwater assets? You can strike with unpredictability and keep potential enemies guessing. You state “subs cant project power”. They do frequently and have historically. Facts are facts, no… Read more »

julian1
julian1
6 months ago
Reply to  John Stott

So John, which world navy do you think has got it right? All leading world navies seem to be investing currently in carriers, apart from the Russians – but their situation is more mishap then design right?

Meirion X
Meirion X
6 months ago
Reply to  John Stott

More Nonsense from you again!

You Know nothing of warfare!

John Stott
John Stott
6 months ago
Reply to  Meirion X

Really? I told you afore, you know nothing of me or my past. You assume, far, far too much.

Meirion X
Meirion X
6 months ago
Reply to  John Stott

Pebbling a One tool toolbox!

Proves my point you know nothing!

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
6 months ago
Reply to  John Stott

I’m interested in hearing about you and your past mate….

Airborne
Airborne
6 months ago
Reply to  John Stott

Oh dear, it would seem the navies from the US, Russia, India, China and France, with the smaller operators such as Australia, Italy, Spain etc, have all got it wrong and should bin all their aircraft capable carriers? Send them an email and remind them that cyber is the way forward……mmmmmmm it’s always obvious who has no subject matter experience, as no matter what cyber/drone systems in place you need a kinetic effect. War is nasty, heavy, smelly and involves killing people and assets, and no amount of improved cyber can change that.would I put more AA systems on the… Read more »

Paul42
Paul42
6 months ago
Reply to  Grubbie

POW already has her mounts in the newer overall grey scheme. QEs third gun fo was shipped to Portsmouth as planned, not removed from POW.

Peter Galloway
Peter Galloway
6 months ago
Reply to  Grubbie

What tosh! Do you really think they would shrink wrap it and put it on a flatbed to move it 200 meters!! This was always planned, fitted before her first operational deployment it is not an ex PoW unit.

Grubbie
Grubbie
6 months ago
Reply to  Peter Galloway

It comes from a pool and yes it’s believable that they shrink wrapped it in the dockyard.

Peter Galloway
Peter Galloway
6 months ago
Reply to  Grubbie

Sorry this related to a claimed StoreRob from PoW

Airborne
Airborne
6 months ago
Reply to  Grubbie

Grubbie your anti-carrier antics are well known on STRN, maybe on here try to be more informed and come up with a reasoned and experienced explanation for your grumpyness. Cheers mate stay safe….we have a carrier on patrol.

Grubbie
Grubbie
6 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

Which one?

Grubbie
Grubbie
6 months ago

“weak and naked”

Airborne
Airborne
6 months ago
Reply to  Grubbie

Who, come on grubbie your anti carrier antics on STRN are now being repeated on here son.

Ryan Brewis
Ryan Brewis
6 months ago

So, with the Type 31 getting 40mm guns, why aren’t more ships like these carriers for instance getting them? Much longer range, programmable ammunition, dual purpose. One on each shoulder (either side of the ski jump) and one on each side at the rear. All round protection with half the number of mounts, better protection against air threats than the Phalanx and better surface protection (not that they should be used in that role) than the DS30M. As for LMM, no. Put it on standalone mounts on the escorts or invest in fucking Sea Ceptor. Same deal with RIM-119/SeaRAM. By… Read more »

Ron5
Ron5
6 months ago
Reply to  Ryan Brewis

“..better protection against air threats than the Phalanx..”

Nope.

Ryan Brewis
Ryan Brewis
6 months ago
Reply to  Ron5

How? Seriously, explain how 20mm is better than 40mm in anything but ROF these days. I’m waiting.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
6 months ago
Reply to  Ryan Brewis

The 40mm mount is not self contained. It requires a system to detect a target and then another system to illuminate/optically track the target. So you need a surveillance system ( Radar on the main mast), track extractors, a command system, operators in the loop, a tracker, a gun mount. All these need to be aligned together to mili rads of accuracy, have corrections inputted into the system allowing for boresight differences in height and position on the vessels deck, allowances and corrections for fall of shot. They all need separate power supplies, maintainers, operators etc. Phalanx is self contained… Read more »

Ryan Brewis
Ryan Brewis
6 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

The Italians managed it with DARDO and the 76mm didn’t they? And considering the Type 31 doesn’t seem to be getting Phalanx, they’re going to have to deal with that regardless.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
6 months ago
Reply to  Ryan Brewis

Yep the T31 is going to have to deal with it. Lose one part of the group of systems and everything is down. As to the 76oto that is not an ideal weapon for anti missile defence. Should it suffer a feed jam (and beleive me as a former 76 mm oto maintainer they do happen more often than you would like) they are normally spectacular in their severity. Broken and bent metal, debulleted rounds, cordite all over the inside of the mount. Ideally a self contained 30 or 40mm mount with a tracker would be ideal… Something like the… Read more »

Ryan Brewis
Ryan Brewis
6 months ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Ok, that’s starting to sound as though you’re saying the Mk4 is worse than a Phalanx/DS30 combo. If so then why even bother introducing the system into service if it isn’t an increase in capability at the very least? I would ask why the RN don’t just double down and use CAMM as a PDMS/LAAD but that would mean cost.

Geoffrey Roach
Geoffrey Roach
6 months ago

I recommended in my submission to the ISDR that both carriers should be fitted with 2 x 12 VLS for Aster 15 and that as many low slung 30 mm cannon with Martlett should also be incorporated. These ships are extremely valuable assets and should receive the best active defence systems possible, regardless of escorts.

AlexS
AlexS
6 months ago

I think it is a choice, a bad choice since Phalanx is obsolescent and RN have much less number of surface ships. In war the plan not always goes accordingly…
A carrier might have to operate alone or with some sectors unprotected by a surface ship due to damage etc.

dave12
dave12
6 months ago
Reply to  AlexS

More Rubbish from you alexski lol hows that prediction on western powers going down the toilet going ? lol

Frank62
Frank62
6 months ago
Reply to  AlexS

And it was a RN carrier that found itself virtually alone & quickly sunk off Norway in WW2 despite us having the largest surface fleet in the world at the time. Money menb have little understanding of the realities of war. With only 19(effectively less) escorts in our fleet, even with allies, it is way too easy for escorts to be detached, lured away or sunk/put out of action leaving the carrier isolated.
Russia & China have been studying & developing strategies to eliminate carriers for decades & our complacency could cost us dear.

DaveyB
DaveyB
6 months ago
Reply to  AlexS

Based on what evidence is Phalanx obsolete?

AlexS
AlexS
6 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

20mm range against now faster missiles.
Not one was put in new USN FFG for example. They choose a RAM launcher instead. So it is on way out.

Airborne
Airborne
6 months ago
Reply to  AlexS

Wrong mate. Sorry.

Noth
Noth
6 months ago

So this brings the number of Phalanx units up to 4 right? That graphic needs updaing then.

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
6 months ago
Reply to  Noth

It clearly states Three.

Paul42
Paul42
6 months ago
Reply to  Noth

There can, and should, be 4 but only 3 are fitted. If extra funding is available, we seriously need to look again at the QEs and fit a decent anti aircraft armament,

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
6 months ago
Reply to  Paul42

I believe there is a Pool of them that are swapped around and refurbished to suit.

Paul42
Paul42
6 months ago
Reply to  Captain P Wash

There is a pool. Large surface units such as Albion and the QEs have theirs fitted as standard and stay fitted unless the vessel is going into a major refit. Surprisingly POW had 3 fitted at a much earlier stage than QE.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
6 months ago
Reply to  Paul42

We have T45’s T23’s fitted with plenty of Sea Ceptors & Sea Venoms. 2 x Phalanx on each T45. That’s the job of the escorts, That’s why we have escorts. If the carrier has to use it’s own self defence weapons, then something has gone very badly wrong.

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
6 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Ha, I note that nobody ever includes the type 31’s in this sort of topic.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
6 months ago
Reply to  Captain P Wash

Well, they are a few years away from entering service, same with the T26. And T31’s primary role isn’t carrier air defence, though I’m sure they will be part of task groups in the future.

DaveyB
DaveyB
6 months ago
Reply to  Captain P Wash

I’ll think you’ll find if something did kick off, that a pair of T31s will be called on. They’ll be used as sacrificially goalkeeper ships placed either side of a carrier. The T45s will provide the umbrella, with the T23/26s ranging around the edges looking for subs. The weapons fit on the T31 would suit a goalkeeper role, though 12 SeaCeptor is on the light side.

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
6 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

So, these Type 31’s are built to be sacrificed….. ? i guess that would explain the lack of relative fire power.

Grubbie
Grubbie
6 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

A billion pounds and full crew vs half a dozen missiles, or possibly some religiously motivated people in speed boat.
Our enemies will be getting a good bargain even if they fail to bag the carrier.

Paul42
Paul42
6 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Escorts are small in numbers and any attack on the carrier grouo would be purposely designed to overwhelm them leaving the key target vessel exposed. Hence just about every other carrier has its own self defence system.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
6 months ago
Reply to  Paul42

We would not have a small amount of escorts if we are sending the carrier in genuine halms way. Some very clever people in the RN and MOD do know a hell of a lot about this subject. Nations just don’t suddenly decide they are going to try and wipe out a western aircraft carrier and all it’s escorts. That’s not how international politics and relations work. And if a genuine conventional war was about to break out with Russia or China, every capability and equipment needed would be very quickly reviewed, and added to any warship heading into halms… Read more »

Paul42
Paul42
6 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Very clever people do plan, on how they can get the best out of what they have. In 1982 we sailed south to the Falklands, every plan we had for action included conflicts involving NATO and the fact we coukd rely on others to make up the shortfall in areas we were lacking, pretty much as we do now. But it was a conflict we had to fight on our own, and we paid a heavy price for our victory. Never assume we have the answer to everything, we don’t.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
6 months ago
Reply to  Paul42

The Falklands was a very long time ago, and many lessons have been learned, and we will not be going to war with a China or Russia on our own. And even another Falklands would be a different story today. As Sombody who served on Invincible class carrier’s for 14 years, I’ve seen first hand how effective our defenses can be. And we are in another league now with T45, F35 and the QE class.

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
6 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Yup, you ain’t wrong there.

Ron5
Ron5
6 months ago
Reply to  Paul42

@Paul42 You repeatedly claim there is a fourth mounting for a Phalanx on QE.

There is not.

Mike Saul
Mike Saul
6 months ago

The carriers need as capable missile system for self defence, sea ceptor fits the bill.

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
6 months ago
Reply to  Mike Saul

Is it not the case that the debris from the launch would cause problems ? I seem to remember a discussion about this a while back.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
6 months ago
Reply to  Captain P Wash

Yes. Gunbuster. The man in the know. He’s explained several times why it’s not such a good idea.

Which is enough for me.

Airborne
Airborne
6 months ago

Correct mate, and for me.

AlexS
AlexS
6 months ago

“Yes. Gunbuster. The man in the know. He’s explained several times why it’s not such a good idea.
Which is enough for me.”

I is not enough for all other navies with carriers, from US, to Russia, to Italy, to India, to France … all have missiles in their carriers.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
6 months ago
Reply to  AlexS

Different ships, different cap tallies. The RN doesn’t fit missiles due to a number of reasons. If other navies do then they can deal with the consequences. FOD is a huge issue and not just from missiles. Phalanx if shooting near to or across a deck is not an ideal sytem, it covers the upper deck in orange plastic sabots and aluminium pusher disks. These same FOD items would also damage and render unserviceable any aircraft they hit and probably kill people on the deck. A trial on an LPD where Goalkeeper (30mm not 20mm but a good representation shot… Read more »

DRS
DRS
6 months ago
Reply to  Captain P Wash

Not if you have hard top to open and sea ceptor only engages the main motor 30 meters above launch height. Have a look at https://www.savetheroyalnavy.org/should-hms-queen-elizabeth-be-fitted-with-her-own-missile-defences/

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
6 months ago
Reply to  DRS

Don’t please get me wrong on this though …. I would much prefer to see these Brilliant Ships with the best self defence systems ever devised.

Mike Saul
Mike Saul
6 months ago
Reply to  Captain P Wash

Every other navy operating carriers has opted to fit defensive missile systems to their carriers. So they are all wrong and we are correct.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
6 months ago
Reply to  Mike Saul

I dont think they or the RN is wrong or right as such.

It’s just differing doctrine.

I also suspect the RN has other undisclosed systems of a cyber/ECM / EW nature that it believes will do the job.

Ron5
Ron5
6 months ago

Or just shortage of money?

julian1
julian1
6 months ago
Reply to  Mike Saul

How many of those navies are actually experienced with fighting their carriers? I can only really think of the RN and USN which have any kind of legacy with carrier warfare. The French, the Chinese, the Spanish – big NO

DaveyB
DaveyB
6 months ago
Reply to  Captain P Wash

I’ll take you back to a summer exercise we did embarked on the late HMS Ark Royal. This was prior to us going to Bosnia/Kosovo (can’t remember which). We were off the Hebrides and the ship was going to do a live fire exercise. She still had her Sea Darts then. All flying was curtailed and no aircraft maintenance was allowed on the main deck. We were invited to the bridge to watch. Two Sea Darts came up onto the rails, the launcher turned and fired. F**k me, it leapt off the rails and within seconds there was a large… Read more »

Ron5
Ron5
6 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

Interesting post Davey. Thanks.

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
6 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

Well yes mate, We all had our doubts at the time too. thankfully we avoided the worst that they could send at the time, unlike all the other poor souls.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
6 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

Exactly my point at the top of the thread. Only just read this far down.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
6 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

Loved Dart shoots…especially the NASA style countdown that took weeks to complete! Champagne for the Dart team on completion…much the same for Wolf in its various guises, Harpoon and Exocet.

I was lucky if I got a tin of goffa for firing 2 x 30s (Twins or singles) and 2x 20mms , GPMGS, chaff launchers etc…all with a few hours notice!

julian1
julian1
6 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

that’s the best explanation I’ve seen and makes perfect sense to me

DRS
DRS
6 months ago
Reply to  Mike Saul

Agree, from prior discussions on this someone mentioned they have been designed so they could be fitted on (Based on written answer from MOD). It is a cost matter but now should be less of an issue. One extra phalanx, and perhaps one 12 cell pack port and starboard side at the bow, with some armour to protect from small arms fire.

Pacman27
Pacman27
6 months ago

Does anyone know if the Rn still has its goalkeeper CIWs?

also refe the before on the T31. If the barrels aren’t water cooled. How long will they last trying to lay a lead wall n the way of an incoming missile

Paul T
Paul T
6 months ago
Reply to  Pacman27

The GoalKeeper Systems have been Taken out of Use but im not sure if they have Been taken out of the Inventory Completely.Id have thought they would be a Better Fit for the Carriers but the RN decided to go All Phalanx.

4th watch
4th watch
6 months ago
Reply to  Pacman27

A frightened man with a bucket has saved many a boat.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
6 months ago

It’s a strange old phenomenon.

Just re read the French carrier thread and not a peep from the anti carrier lobby.

It seems only a UK carrier is obsolete/ waste of money/ sitting duck / imperialist/

Funny that. I’d have expected more resistance to it!

Paul T
Paul T
6 months ago

Indeed – Theres Nowt as Queer As Folk as the Saying Goes – But like the CDG id bet that if the New French Carrier is Actually Built it Will have a Missile System Fitted.

Ron5
Ron5
6 months ago
Reply to  Paul T

Missile systems are shown in the graphics but then again the French carrier is projected to cost twice as much. The UK Treasury regards weapons on warships as unnecessary frippery.

Grubbie
Grubbie
6 months ago

I think that most people can see that having only one carrier with limited escorts is such a stupid idea as to be unworthy of comment.

Ron5
Ron5
6 months ago
Reply to  Grubbie

I think that most people view your comments as such a set of stupid ideas as to be unworthy of comment.

Captain P Wash
Captain P Wash
6 months ago
Reply to  Ron5

Well yes again, I have to agree here……. that’s why I tend not to reply.

Marcos Cooper
Marcos Cooper
6 months ago

were the cannons the same ones that equipped the HMS Ocean?

Nick
Nick
6 months ago

Ideally the 3rd and 4th location should have been SeaRAM. Non deck penetrating and the same footprint as the Phalanx. There is also an argument that these should replace one of the 40mm turrets on the T31.

https://www.raytheonmissilesanddefense.com/capabilities/products/searam-ship-defense-system

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
6 months ago

Everyone is thinking 2 dimensionally. Remember that warfare happens in 3 dimensions. Phalanx gives hemispherical cover against top divers coming down your funnel which seems to have been missed. Sea Skimmers are not the only threat. The mounts conduct there own threat analysis and they “talk” to each other to determine which mount has the highest kill chance. This is all done real time, while the ship is manoeuvring and doing all the other Anti Ship Missile defence measures that come into play. In a real shooting situation the system is in full auto, man out of the loop unless… Read more »

kevin
kevin
1 month ago

the phalanx arcs graphics would be very helpful to the Chines PLA Navy planning an attack

George Allison
1 month ago
Reply to  kevin

Do you think they don’t have photographs of the ship?